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Pacers Links: Pacers face Mavericks to wrap up preseason; enjoy effort of Special Olympics baller

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The Pacers are in Dallas for one more practice game before the real thing starts on Tuesday night at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The Pacers escaped the chilly preview of winter rolling through Indiana this week to enjoy some warmth in Dallas while preparing to play the Mavericks on Friday night (as Mark Boyle rubbed in our collective face yesterday).

Before leaving yesterday, the Pacers practiced and then left the status of Danny Granger's return up in the air. On thing is for sure, Granger won't be playing in Dallas tonight as the Pacer have their final dress rehearsal. The Pacers lost to the Mavs last week when Granger first strained his calf and starters George Hill, David West, Roy Hibbert and Paul George sat out.

This time around, the starters with Lance Stephenson locked in for the time being, will be in for their final tuneup against Dirk Nowitzki and his new-look team.

For a pleasant start to this Friday morning that has some sunshine returning to Central Indiana, here's a look at the Pacers pumping up a Special Olympics baller as he shows off his handles in the Philippines.

Check out the links:

2013-14 NBA Preview - SBNation.com

Preseason Game Preview: Pacers at Mavericks | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

▶ Special Olympics Basketball Player wows Pacers at NBA Cares Basketball Clinic - YouTube

Practice: Granger on his Health | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Granger's Immediate Status Uncertain | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Danny Granger unlikely to play when Pacers open regular season Tuesday | Indianapolis Star | indystar.com

Donald Sloan: 'It's now or never' - Indy Sports Legends

Rick Carlisle hints Dallas Mavericks didn't hustle every play last season | Dallas Morning News

Ellis: I'm looking for the pass too much - Dallas Mavericks Blog - ESPN Dallas

Cuban: Dalembert 'the key' to Mavs' season - Dallas Mavericks Blog - ESPN Dallas

Gordon Hayward, Utah Jazz in talks on contract extension - ESPN

32 Bold Predictions for the 2013-14 NBA Season - Grantland

NBA Finals to adopt 2-2-1-1-1 format - Yahoo SportsNBA Finals to adopt 2-2-1-1-1 format - Yahoo Sports

The average career earnings of athletes across America’s major sports will shock you | For The Win